29 Aug 2012 Posted in News Release By Press Office
The figures show that many mistakenly believe the NHS spends much more on medicines than it actually does, whilst there is poor understanding of the huge expense involved in their discovery, development, approval and launch.
The head of the UK pharmaceutical industry believes it is vital that the public better understands the facts and fully appreciates their low cost compared to their considerable economic and health benefits.
The survey shows:
Commenting, Stephen Whitehead, Chief Executive of the ABPI, said:
“I am really concerned that people do not understand the cost or value of medicines in this country. To create new treatments in the UK, the pharmaceutical industry undertakes huge risk and investment and is still able to provide the NHS with amongst the lowest priced medicines in Europe.
“These medicines are the bedrock of the NHS, and have saved and changed the lives of millions of people. Many diseases which once caused significant suffering, such as HIV, diabetes and heart disease, are now manageable conditions which people can live with until old age, and their treatment becomes cheaper as generics can be used once medicines lose their patent.
“What’s more, our medicines can save the system money because their effective use can often reduce the need for expensive hospital care and operations.
“As well providing real value, we also contribute billions annually to the UK economy and provide 67,000 jobs. In the coming months we will be doing much to educate people and patients of the facts about medicines – the huge benefits, the low prices and the high cost of development."
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